Commentaries On Living 3
JIDDU KRISHNAMURTI (18951986) is regarded internationally as one of the great educators and philosophers of our time. Born in South India, he was educated in England, and traveled the world, giving public talks, holding dialogues , writing, and founding schools until the end of his life at the age of ninety. He claimed allegiance to no caste, nationality, or religion and was bound by no tradition. Time magazine named Krishnamurti, along with Mother Teresa, 'one of the five saints of the 20th century,' and the Dalai Lama calls Krishnamurti 'one of the greatest thinkers of the age.' His teachings are published in 75 books, 700 audio titles and 1200 videocassettes. Thus far, over 4,000,000 copies of his books have been sold in over thirty languages. The rejection of all spiritual and psychological authority, including his own, is a fundamental theme. He said human beings have to free themselves of fear, conditioning, authority, and dogma through self-knowledge. He suggested that this will bring about order and real psychological change. Our violent, conflict-ridden world cannot be transformed into a life of goodness, love, and compassion by any political, social, or economic strategies. It can be transformed only through mutation in individuals brought about through their own observation without any guru or organized religion. Krishnamurti's stature as an original philosopher attracted traditional and also creative people from all walks of life. Heads of state, eminent scientists, prominent leaders of the United Nations and various religious organizations, psychiatrists and psychologists, and university professors all engaged in dialogue with Krishnamurti. Students, teachers, and millions of people from all walks of life read his books and came to hear him speak. He bridged science and religion without the use of jargon, so scientists and lay people alike could understand his discussions of time, thought, insight, and death. During his lifetime, Krishnamurti established foundations in the United States, India, England, Canada, and Spain. Their defined role is the preservation and dissemination of the teachings, but without any authority to interpret or deify the teachings or the person. Krishnamurti also founded schools in India, England, and the United States. He envisioned that education should emphasize the understanding of the whole human being, mind and heart, not the mere acquisition of academic and intellectual skills. Education must be for learning skills in the art of living, not only the technology to make a living. Krishnamurti said, 'Surely a school is a place where one learns about the totality, the wholeness of life. Academic excellence is absolutely necessary, but a school includes much more than that. It is a place where both the teacher and the taught explore, not only the outer world, the world of knowledge, but also their own thinking, their behavior.' He said of his work, 'There is no belief demanded or asked, there are no followers, there are no cults, there is no persuasion of any kind, in any direction, and therefore only then we can meet on the same platform, on the same ground, at the same level. Then we ca
Commentaries On Living 3
Self-Knowledge or Self-Hypnosis?
It had rained all night and most of the morning, and now the sun was going down behind dark, heavy clouds. There was no color in the sky, but the perfume of the rain-soaked earth filled the air. The frogs had croaked all night long with persistency and rhythm, but with the dawn they became silent. The tree trunks were dark with the long rain, and the leaves, washed clean of the summer's dust, would be rich and green again in a few more days. The lawns too would be greener, the bushes would soon be flowering, and there would be rejoicing. How welcome was the rain after the hot, dusty days! The mountains beyond the hills seemed not too far away, and the breeze blowing from them was cool and pure. There would be more work, more food, and starvation would be a thing of the past.
One of those large brown eagles was making wide circles in the sky, floating on the breeze without a beat of its wings. Hundreds of people on bicycles were going home after a long day in the office. A few talked as they rode, but most of them were silent and evidently tired out. A large group had stopped, with their bicycles resting against their bodies, and were animatedly discussing some issue, while nearby a policeman wearily watched them. On the corner a big new building was going up. The road was full of brown puddles, and the passing cars splashed one with dirty water which left dark marks on one's clothing. A cyclist stopped, bought from a vendor one cigarette, and was on his way again.
A boy came along carrying on his head an old kerosene tin, half filled with some liquid. He must have been working around that new building which was under construction. He had bright eyes and an extraordinarily cheerful face; he was thin but strongly built, and his skin was very dark, burnt by the sun. He wore a shirt and a loincloth, both the color of the earth, brown with long usage. His head was well shaped, and there was a certain arrogance in his walk–a boy doing a man's work. As he left the crowd behind, he began to sing, and suddenly the whole atmosphere changed. His voice was ordinary, a boyish voice, lusty and raucous; but the song had rhythm, and he would probably have kept time with his hands, had not one hand been holding the kerosene tin on top of his head. He was aware that someone was walking behind him, but was too cheerful to be shy, and he was obviously not in any way concerned with the peculiar change that had come about in the atmosphere. There was a blessing in the air, a love that covered everything, a gentleness that was simple, without calculation, a goodness that was ever flowering.
Abruptly the boy stopped singing and turned towards a dilapidated hut that stood some distance back from the road. It would soon be raining again.
The visitor said he had held a government position that was good as far as it went, and as he had had a first class education both at home and abroad, he could have climbed quite high. He was married, he said, and had a couple of children. Life was fairly enjoyable, for success was assured; he owned the house they were living in, and he had put aside money for the education of his children. He knew Sanskrit, and was familiar with the religious tradition. Things were going along pleasantly enough, he said; but one morning he awoke very early, had his bath, and sat down for meditation before his family or the neighbors were up. Though he had had a restful sleep, he couldn't meditate; and suddenly he felt an overwhelming urge to spend the rest of his life in meditation. There was no hesitancy or doubt about it; he would devote his remaining years to finding whatever there was to be found through meditation, and he told his wife, and his two boys, who were at college, that he was going to become a sannyasi. His colleagues were surprised by his decision, but accepted his resignation; and in a few days he had left